Financial counselling website launched in Cayman

| 17/08/2011

(CNS): The former manager of the Cayman Islands Development Bank has launched the Caribbean’s first independent financial counselling website, which he hopes will become a regular source for financial advice and other finance related information throughout the region. With various categories of membership, some free and some paid for, the goal of, says Ralph Lewis, is to empower its members with financial tools and knowledge so they will be able to take control of their finances, and in turn their lives, whilst maintaining a high level of confidentiality and integrity.

“The need for financial counseling grows daily,” noted Lewis, who has over 30 years experience in commercial banking and held senior positions in Cayman National Bank and the Cayman Islands Development Bank. “It is clear that a strategy which includes the use of the internet and cost reduction techniques will result in a viable model whilst encouraging a culture of financial discipline. At this stage in my life, I am committed to giving back to the society by seeking to provide a suite of services that will fill a critical need that I have observed over the years through my interaction with clients at all levels of the society.”

LCMoneyPlan’s financial toolbox provides a range of tools designed to develop financial control and freedom. Members will also have access to information on local financial institutions’ products and services in a central location, and in addition, the site’s online blog, the Financial Angle, gives members the opportunity to share objective views and comments on finance related matters. Access to a counsellor will be through a range of channels, which include email, online chat, telephone and video interviews. 

Visitors to the site can register within four classes: Free, Student, Green and Blue. The green and blue classes require a quarterly membership fee of $30 and $50 to gain access to the additional benefits which, Lewis says, members will find extremely useful.

LCMoneyPlan’s services include a students’ club which has been designed to give basic financial management training to high school and university students free of cost. The goal is to assist them in prioritizing their personal expenses with the use of a “New Employee Expense Prioritization tool”.

“Furthermore, we know how hard it is for our graduates to find new jobs and so we have included a ‘Job Search’ tab which lists all local available jobs for graduates,” said Lewis.

Lewis Consulting, the parent company for was established in January 2010 to provide one-on-one financial counseling support for individuals. However, according to Lewis, the current economic conditions prompted a review in business strategy, giving birth to the decision in March 2011 to launch online financial counselling services.  "The provision of the service via this avenue addresses for customers the aspects of affordability, accessibility and privacy and for the business the ability to reach a wider cross section of clients," he said..

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